“The Maduranthagam lake lost its storage capacity due to sedimentation in the water spread area due to which it got reduced from 694 Million Cubic Feet (mcft) to 530 mcft. To revive the original storage capacity, scientific capacity addition and storage augmentation will be done,” the GO read.
The Maduranthagam tank is one of the biggest artificial lakes and the second largest in the State. The main sources of water supply to the tank are Killiyar river from Vandavasi and Nelvomadavu from Uthiramerur. The surplus water from the lake is discharged into the Kallar River, which confluences with the Palar river.
The capacity of the lake was increased from 609 to 694 mcft by providing a two-ft tall falling shutter in 1985-86 and water from the lake irrigates 2852.55 acres.
In the recent years the lake has been affected by sedimentation, sheet erosion by surface runoff, gullying, cutting of channels in the soil, bed degradation and so on.
Due to these, the lake faced flooding in the 2015 north-east monsoon following which the State government decided to increase its capacity. Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, in the previous budget session in March last year, announced that four lakes, including Maduranthagam, would be renovated at the cost of Rs 302 crore.
Following this, a detailed project report was prepared and a proposal was sent to NABARD to execute the project. In anticipation of fund allocation by NABARD, the State government had sanctioned the fund and Rs 1 crore would be spent during the 2020-21 financial year. The rest would be spent subsequently.